Archive for the Movie Category

I Love You, Phillip Morris

Posted in Movie with tags , , , on June 20, 2011 by ldw

This movie was BAD!

First, you have Ewan McGregor as a blonde.  Next, there’s Jim Carrey trying to be serious.  Then you have the plot (I don’t care if it’s based on real events)!

This is a movie about a guy named Steven Russell from Virginia (Carrey) who leaves his wife, moves to Texas, and lives out if homosexuality.  He lives well above his means and gets arrested and convicted of insurance fraud.  While in prison he meets Phillip Morris (McGregor).  They fall in love and when Steven gets out of prison he pretends to be a lawyer in order to get Morris out early.  They move to Florida and begin their live together.  However, Steven continues living above his means and embezzles money.  But he gets caught and both men go back to prison (even though Morris had nothing to do with the crimes).  Steven tries (and succeeds for a short time) to escape but each time is caught and put back into prison.  Finally, he pretends to be infected with AIDS and fakes his own death just to try to get Morris out of prison.  He doesn’t succeed and is, instead, put back into prison with a life sentence.  He is still there today – in solitary confinement.

This movie can only be rented if you are 18 or older.  But I suggest renting ANYTHING else.  There was nothing good about this movie.

Rating:

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Monsters Vs. Aliens

Posted in Movie with tags , , , , , on August 7, 2010 by ldw

I really didn’t like this movie.  I thought it was really dumb.  Now, my nieces love it – but they also like things like SpongeBob and Big Time Rush.  It’s about a girl, named Susan Murphy, who is hit with a comet and becomes huge – bigger than buildings huge – and is put into a government program with other monsters.  Others in the program include, B.O.B., Dr. Cockroach Ph.D., The Missing Link, and Insectosaurus.  These are the monsters that are kept in a secret location so that they couldn’t hurt anyone.  Then the Alien comes.  Gallaxhar is a squid-like alien looking for the comet that hit Susan because it contained a power that he needed to create a multitude of cloned minions.  He gains the power from Susan and makes his clones but don’t worry; all hope is not lost!  Susan learns that she can be independent and strong and she saves the day.

This movie contains the voices of Reese Withersppoon, Seth Rogan, Hough Laurie, Will Arnett, Keifer Sutherland, Rainn Wilson, Steven Colbert, and Paul Rudd.  This A-list cast doesn’t help the movie at all.  Steven Colbert is great as the president and Reese Witherspoon is fun as Susan but that’s about all I can say for this movie.

Anyway, boo.

Rating: 1/2

Doubt

Posted in Movie with tags , , , on August 7, 2010 by ldw

This movie is about Nuns who suspect a Father of child molestation.  They believe that he is having in an inappropriate relationship with the black boy at their school.  They find evidence of this, the speak to the boys mother, and they even confront the priest in question.  The evidence is circumstantial at best.  The mother doesn’t seem to care.  And the priest denies the accusation.  But they fight for what they believe and in the end the priest leaves the school and is transferred to another.  But by then the Nuns are so filled with this situation that they cannot see Truth or trust anything but their own opinion.  One Nun discontinues the hunt and the other wonders.

This is one of Meryl Streep’s greatest roles ever!  She was amazing as the Principal and Head Nun of the Catholic school.  I was intimidated and a bit afraid of her character (just as the students of her school were).  Amy Adams was a brilliant Nun school teacher who is the second to suspect the priest.  She eventually is spoken to by the priest and convinced of his innocence.  She, too, is intimidated by Streep’s character but eventually learns to stand up for herself.  Adams somehow toed the line of mousy shyness and bad ass conviction with a believability and strength that is lost on many actresses today.  Kudos Miss Adams!  Every time I see her in a movie she gets better.  Phillip Seymour Hoffman played the Father-in-question.  He almost became the reason I didn’t see this wonderful film – I don’t like him as an actor (or much as a man).  And his character was creepy and hard to watch or trust much of the movie.  I wouldn’t go as far as to say he was brilliant, but he was good.  He made you wonder because he acted one way that was unsettling but spoke with strength of heart against the accusations against him.  Viola Davis rounded out the great cast as the mother of the boy who was the suspected victim of the priest.  As a black woman with a son in a white catholic school in the early 60s, she was strong yet run hard, confident yet unsure, and beautifully lovely yet harshly realistic.  Davis was phenomenal in the role and even though her character was in only a few minutes of the movie, she was nominated for an Oscar for the role.  She broke my heart with her idea that if her son was being protected by the priest then it was worth it if he was also being victimized by him – after all, it was only until the spring when her son would change schools.  Ugg – GREAT SCENE!

The cinematography was something different that I don’t believe I’d seen attempted before.  It was almost as if the movie were in black and white.  The lack of color during the Bronx winter, the black robes of the Nuns and priest, the dark coats of the students all played into this concept of desolation and chill.  There was very little music in the movie, even less laughter, and only a singular handful of smiles; all of which deepened the isolation and harshness of the situation and movie.  It was like a beautifully choreographed piece of dance that made you cry even though there was no need.

The best part, for me, was that you never know for sure who is right and who is wrong in this movie.  And it makes you take stock in what you doubt and don’t.  Love it!

Rating: * * * *

Valkyrie

Posted in Movie with tags , , , on August 28, 2009 by ldw

I LOVED this movie.  Even though everyone else hated it!  I even liked it with Tom Cruise.

Tom Cruise plays a real life Colonel in Hitler’s SS army.  Claus Von Stauffenburg leads one of the initiatives to kill Hitler and he almost succeeded!  Von Stauffenburg decided during time in Africa (where he lost an eye) during WWII that Hitler was a threat to Germany and needed to be stopped.  He found others like him and helped lead a mission called Valkyrie.  Valkyrie was the code word for the assassination of Hitler.  Von Stauffenburg was to become close to the Fuhrer in order to gain access to special meetings of Hitler’s elite team members so he could plant a bomb to kill the commander of Germany’s army.  On a signal Operation: Valkyrie would be enacted putting all of Von Stauffenburg’s followers in charge of the Nazi army.  However, Hitler was not killed in the blast and Valkyrie was not effected fast enough to work before Hitler made radio connection with his SS.  Von Stauffenburg and his followers were all put to death by firing squad.

I enjoyed this movie because it was historical and entertaining!  Cruise was really good as Col. Von Stauffenburg.  He even worked well with the ensemble cast making the movie less of a TOM CRUISE film and more of a production of great actors.  Others in this wonderful cast are Kenneth Branagh, Bill Nighly, Tom Wilkinson, any many others.

I loved the colors used in Valkyrie.  It was greyed with a lot of red to accent Nazi emblems or important items.  There were a lot of bright contrasting colors in women’s dresses or banquet foods but most of the movie had a sinister feel because of the greys and blacks used.

Overall, great movie.  I’d watch it again!

Rating: * * * *

Valkyrie

Sunshine Cleaning

Posted in Movie with tags , , , on August 25, 2009 by ldw

This movie is about a single mother (Amy Adams) whose best years seem to be behind her.  She was the most popular girl in high school – a cheerleader – who dated the star quarterback.  We never know if he is the father of her kid but it’s assumed – oh and he’s cheating on his wife with her (it’s been going on for years).  She works as a cleaning lady for the town and she doesn’t even own the business!  She learns that cleaning crime scenes pays extremely well, so she talks her sister into becoming her partner for Sunshine Cleaning – their new business.  Her sister (Emily Blunt) is a loser who has done nothing with her life still lives with their father (Alan Arkin) who has equally failed at life.  The sisters know nothing about crime scene clean up but they are cheaper than any other cleaning service.  They soon learn that there is a lot more to it than just bleaching up blood – Adams begins really investing in this business and feeling really accomplished in it as she learns the trade and becomes a real CSC (crime scene cleaner).  Unfortunately, she leaves her sister to clean one scene alone and that does not work out well!  I won’t spoil it for you – see it!

Adams and Blunt are perfect in these roles and Arkin has once again created a stellar character out of nothing.  It was fun to watch these three interact and even in the sadness of the movie there was joy within their relationships.  They really brought their characters to life and gave much more depth than what was written!  The faith in one another was tangible.

It felt like an indie film – which seems to be in right now – but that worked for this film.

There really isn’t a ton to say – watch it … discuss.

Rating: * * *

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Hannah Montana: The Movie

Posted in Movie with tags , , , , , , on August 19, 2009 by ldw

Okay … I’ll say it.  I LOVED this movie.  I even cried a little!

So this movie is about Miley Stewart (Miley Cyrus) who is secretly the mega superstar Hannah Montana.  Unfortunately for everyone in her life, Stewart has allowed her secret mega super-stardom to go to her head.  She acts entitled around her family and friends and even in front of the media.  She ruins her best friend, Lily’s (Emily Osment) birthday.  She fights for a pair of shoes again Tyra Banks (not sure why anyone would go against Miss Banks … I love you, you feisty woman!)  So to get her head back on straight, Miley’s father, Robbie Ray (Billy Ray Cyrus) “kidnaps” her and takes her back to Tennessee where she grew up before her mother (Brooke Shields) died.  Robbie hopes that once Miley is back in TN she will reconnect with who she truly is.  There is romance, costume changes, the standby “I need to be two people in two places at one time” shtick, great moments of love and tenderness, and all the other things you expect from a Disney movie.

Miley Cyrus was great – better than when she’s on Disney channel – as Miley Stewart.  Emily Osment was (as always) amazing as Lily (I love her and can’t wait to see what else she does).  Lucas Till was decent as Travis Brody but nothing extremely noteworthy.  No one else was any good (except Tyra and Vanessa Williams).

Disney did well with this movie.

Rating: * * * 1/2

Hannah Montana The Movie

Marley And Me

Posted in Movie with tags , , , , , , on August 19, 2009 by ldw

Okay this movie was talked big – it didn’t fulfill for me.  I didn’t care about the characters and I didn’t care about the dog – until the end.  I’ve seen two dogs put to sleep and it isn’t fun.  I didn’t enjoy seeing it again (even though it was a movie).

Jenifer Aniston and Owen Wilson worked well in their roles but I dislike them both so I had a hard time getting around that.  I don’t think their performances were very good – in fact they weren’t even regular good!

There isn’t much more to say … it was a romcom so the directing, acting, soundtrack, etc isn’t something to nominate for an Oscar

Rating: *

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